Wednesday, June 16, 2021

Building the Future of Air Power: The F-22 Raptor

Ya know I kinda get where Lockheed Martin is going.  They had a winner with a flaw that turned into a huge flaw with the F-22 (stealth dogfighter but times changed when we needed a long range missile thrower) and a loser that was a loser from the outset with the F-35.

So they're trying to put lipstick on this pig (did you notice how they threw the F-35 into the mix?).

Having said that airpower theorist got it so wrong again.

They didn't take into account the advancement in detection of stealth aircraft.

They didn't take into account the advancement in missiles, the advent of electronic attack and the threat that new tech (lasers) would bring.

But mostly they ignored the threat that was China.

Many have said it before but I'll say it again (with an addition).  The YF-23 and the X-32 contender would have been better options.

That YF-23 is just a big, stealthy, fast, missile truck with the bonus of long range.

The X-32 with that big ass wing would have carried fuel for days.

They tried to predict the future and failed.

I think that applies across the board for this generation of generals. Ya know what the sad reality is?

The old Skool Marine Leadership and the same applies for the other services, built the force that would win in the desert for Desert Storm, the War On Terror and the debacles in Afghanistan/Syria/N. Africa etc...

This gen won't be able to say the same.

They will be able to say that they pushed a bunch of failed concepts.  Some made it to production, others didn't and great ideas that should have been pursued were shelved.

Depending on when the next war hits we could be fighting in evolved weapon systems that have their roots in the 70's and 80's.

That should be stunning.

The sad reality?

For all the money we've spent on defense it would appear that innovation has taken a hit.  It's almost like movies.  No new stuff just rehashing of stuff that came before.

I believe that's a result of defense consolidation but that's a different discussion.

Can we state that the best we can hope for is that no further damage is done by this generation of leadership and to pray that the next gen does better?

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